Have you ever wondered why some people seem to have hair that grows at warp speed while others struggle to get past the bob stage? The answers lie in the fascinating world of hair growth science.
Read on to understand the nitty-gritty of what’s happening on our scalps.
Hair growth isn’t a one-size-fits-all process; it’s a symphony of cycles, with each strand going through three main phases:
The anagen phase is the golden period of growth. During this phase, your hair follicles are actively producing new cells, pushing older ones out, and making your hair longer. This phase can last anywhere from two to seven years, depending on your genetics.
After the growth spurt comes the catagen phase, a short transition where the hair follicle shrinks and detaches from the blood supply.
Finally, we have the telogen phase, where your hair takes a well-deserved break. This is the resting phase, lasting about three months, during which the old hair falls out to make room for new growth. It’s perfectly normal to shed 50 to 100 hairs a day during this phase.
Hormonal changes during puberty, pregnancy, or menopause can significantly impact hair growth. The culprit here is the male hormone androgen. Androgens, present in both men and women, can cause hair follicles to shrink, leading to shorter hair.
Estrogen, on the other hand, supports hair growth. That’s why pregnant women often experience a boost in hair thickness and shine. But you should also know that post-pregnancy, the hormonal rollercoaster can lead to increased shedding as the body rebalances. You can reach out to hair professionals who have tips and tricks up their sleeves for restoring your hair growth.
The genetic code you inherit determines factors like hair thickness, growth rate, and even the likelihood of male or female pattern baldness.
Essential nutrients such as vitamins A, C, and E, along with minerals like iron and zinc, work like magic in promoting hair growth. Protein, in particular, is the hair’s best friend. A balanced diet ensures your body has the building blocks it needs for healthy hair.
Stress can wreak havoc on your hair’s growth. High stress levels can push hair follicles into the telogen phase prematurely, leading to increased shedding.
Use the following tips to promote healthy hair growth:
- Eat a Balanced Diet: Have lean proteins to give your hair the nutrients it deserves. Fresh vegetables and fruits are always an amazing choice for maintaining your hair’s health.
- Stay Hydrated: Water is essential for overall health, and your hair is no exception. Hydrated hair is happy hair.
- Regular Haircuts: Haircuts make your hair grow faster and prevent breakage, thus increasing its length.
- Gentle Hair Care: Avoid excessive heat styling, harsh chemicals, and tight hairstyles that can damage your hair and impede growth.
- Regular Exercise: Exercise increases blood flow, delivering more oxygen and nutrients to your hair follicles.
- Manage Stress: Spare time for yourself and engage in the activities that destress you, whether it is painting, playing with your pet, taking a walk in the park, and so on.